Immigration Drama 'The Golden Dream' Tops First-Ever Fenix Awards

Festival de Cannes/PA
"The Golden Dream"

Viggo Mortensen nabs best actor for his role in the Argentine co-production 'Land of Plenty'

Diego Quemada-Diez's The Golden Dream (La Jaula de Oro), a road movie about Central American immigrants, won best picture at the Fenix Awards, a new ceremony honoring the best in Latin American and Iberian cinema.

Some of the biggest names in Spanish- and Portuguese-language film walked the red carpet Thursday night, including Gael Garcia Bernal (Amores Perros), Alice Braga (City of God), Mia Maestro (The Motorcycle Diaries) and Eugenio Derbez (Instructions Not Included).

E! Entertainment Television aired a live transmission of the event from Mexico City.

Best director and screenplay went to Mexico's Amat Escalante for his brutal drug war drama Heli, which earned him best director at Cannes.

Another Cannes title and Fenix winner for best actor was Argentine cult director Lisandro Alonso's Land of Plenty (Jauja), which features Viggo Mortensen as a 19th-century army captain searching for his lost daughter in the wilds of Patagonia. Mortensen spoke a perfect Spanish while giving his acceptance speech.

Brazil's Leandra Leal walked away with best actress for her performance in the Brazilian crime drama Wolf at the Door (O Lobo Atras da Porta).

Many attending the event had stamps of a red (symbolizing blood) Mexico on their hands to protest the disappearance of 43 students who went missing a month ago and are feared dead after clashing with police in the Pacific coast state of Guerrero.

Actors Daniel Gimenez Cacho and Maribel Verdu kicked off the ceremony reading a complete list of the disappeared, and throughout the ceremony actors and filmmakers used the podium to demand justice for the missing students.

Association Cinema 23 created the Fenix Awards to promote cinema from Latin America, Spain and Portugal.

A list of winners follows:

Best picture

The Golden Dream (Mexico-Spain)

Best director

Amat Escalante, Heli

Best performance by an actor in a leading role

Viggo Mortensen, Land of Plenty

Best performance by an actress in a leading role

Leandra Leal, Wolf at the Door

Best screenplay


Best cinematography


Best documentary feature

Sobre la Marxa (Spain)

Achievement in editing

The Golden Dream

Achievement in music

Witching and Bitching

Achievement in sound

The Golden Dream

Achievement in costume design


Achievement in art design

Witching and Bitching

Lifetime achievement award

Arturo Ripstein

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